Each of Mr. Manson’s puzzle books creates a new genre of puzzles and The Rails I Tote is no different. Each of the 45 puzzles in Rails I Tote has a wildly imaginative story on one page and a beautiful illustration on the facing page.
From the Introduction:
“Each of the pictures in this book illustrates two things, one being, of course, the tale that accompanies it. The other, hidden subject of he picture is a simple word game called a Spoonerism.
A Spoonerism results when the initial sounds of any two words are transposed, resulting in two different words. The “Parched Stork” becomes “Starched Pork”; everyone’s favorite “Peas and Carrots,” is transformed into “Keys and Parrots”; and “Legal Beverage” is changed into “Beagle Leverage.”
[...] To help you even more; the story contains a reference to the answer, and the title of the story is, likewise, a reference to the answer.”
Even though this is the lightest of Manson’s puzzle books in terms of difficulty, it is none the less a considerable challenge. The spoonerisms are not only well hidden, but are entertainingly hidden. Manson manages to connect such disperse ideas as “eating breakfast” and “an eel infested castle moat” in a single puzzle. Despite the wild imagery and surreal stories, you will over and over say to yourself, why didn’t see that before!
- Images and quoted text copyright 1987 by Christopher Manson
The Rails I Tote is out of print but used copies can be purchased here: